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Kenda-Geargrinder focused on Battenkill

Team Kenda p/b Geargrinder at Tour de Taiwan

Team Kenda p/b Geargrinder at Tour de Taiwan (Image credit: Lin Chien Hung)

Following a strong performance at the Tour de Taiwan Kenda-Geargrinder is aiming for success during its stateside block of racing that will commence with the rugged International Cycling Union (UCI) sanctioned Tour of the Battenkill, on April 18 in Cambridge, New York. The US-based Continental squad will field a series of talented cyclo-cross riders, including Luca Damiani, Jonny Sundt and Nick Keough, at the partially dirt one-day road race.

The team proved to be on good form last month at the UCI 2.2 Tour de Taiwan and captured second place in the overall classification. All rounder Phil Gaimon is looking forward to putting forward an equally impressive performance during the coming months of US racing.

"I'm really looking forward to Battenkill," Gaimon said. "I'm looking for a chance to get some hard climbing races in this year. I felt like I didn't get to do a lot of that last year. I'm looking at Tour of the Gila and Tour of Utah as my target this year."

Gaimon placed second behind overall winner David McCann during the seven-stage Asian race. He attributes his early season form to the winter months he spent training and racing in the sunny south.

"Taiwan was a big goal for the team for our sponsors there and with it being the first race of the year and a big UCI race we were focused on that," Gaimon said. "It was a very different race this year from the past.

"I was on the bubble as to if I should even go or whether we should send a criterium guy," he added. "It was a big race for the team so I wanted to be there. It turned out to be a hillier race and the first stage was hard."

Following the Tour of Battenkill, Kenda-Geargrinder will compete in the USA CRIT Speed Week Series, Tour of the Gila and Joe Martin Stage Race.

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Kirsten Frattini is an honours graduate of Kinesiology and Health Science from York University in Toronto, Canada. She has been involved in bike racing from the grassroots level to professional cycling's WorldTour. She has worked in both print and digital publishing, and started with Cyclingnews as a North American Correspondent in 2006. Moving into a Production Editor's role in 2014, she produces and publishes international race coverage for all cycling disciplines, edits news and writes features. Currently the Women's Editor at Cyclingnews, Kirsten coordinates global coverage of races, news, features and podcasts about women's professional cycling.